I was excited to see that the new Daft Punk album Random Access Memories will be released on May 21 in the US. I was less excited to see that the vinyl release was going to be $40.
The conversation occurring on the Daft Punk website and on Reddit was an interesting one – a few people stated the price was too high and others were justifying the cost because “it also comes with a digital download code and a record-sized booklet.” This is a silly argument, not because most records these days come with digital download codes, but that they are arguing in favor of the record companies’ draconian copyright laws.
Don’t be ignorant to the fact that you shouldn’t have to fork over any additional funds to transfer Random Access Memories from an analog format to a digital one. Instead of doing things harder, better, faster, or stronger – try doing them smarter.
Legally, you are allowed to create one backup copy of your music – meaning you can transfer it from the vinyl to your hard drive if you so choose. The download code is meant to make this easier for you as a consumer so you don’t have to hook up a record player to your computer, manually record the songs, then separate and label the tracks. The download frees the music from the vinyl format it is otherwise locked in, allowing you to access it on any number of devices.
Back to the $40 – most records run between $15 and $25, including digital download code. Not one thing mentioned in the description of the vinyl release of Random Access Memories, from it being 180 gram vinyl to it being a double-gate fold cover (which is the norm for a two-disc record set) justifies this price. Until I have a sense of what the “record sized-booklet” that is included with this album actually contains, I am going to publicly state that you are being ripped off.